The Elric boys are coming back for a new installment from creator Hiromu Arakawa.
It’s not at all uncommon for popular anime and manga to experience a bit of a backlash, especially if the series served as many people’s first exposure to the medium of Japanese animation. As fans mature and find other works that more exactly fit their preferences and values, some of them, upon taking a second look at their old favorites, decide that Evangelion’s Shinji is just plain whiny, Bleach’s battles are too repetitive, or Sailor Moon’s struggles are immature fluff.
So it’s remarkable that pretty much everyone still has nothing but nice things to say about Fullmetal Alchemist. A monumental hit in its heyday, creator Hiromu Arakawa’s manga was adapted into two separate anime TV series and multiple animated movies, and is riding its continued popularity and esteem to a live-action film version scheduled for release this December.
▼ Trailer for the live-action Fullmetal Alchemist
Of course, nothing gets long-time, hardcore fans’ blood boiling like a poorly done live-action adaptation. Whether or not that’ll be the case with the yet-to-be-released Fullmetal Alchemist remains to be seen, but at the very least existing fans can look forward to a brand-new installment of the manga. Arakawa herself is penning the new chapter, but it won’t be published in manga anthology Monthly Shonen Gangan, the series’ traditional home. Instead, it’ll be given away for free to ticket buyers for the live-action Fullmetal Alchemist.
▼ Warner Brothers, the film’s distributor, announces the new manga installment.
＼イベント中にBIGサプライズ💥／ 映画『#鋼の錬金術師』の入場者特典に、荒川先生の描き下ろし特別編コミックスが大決定！なんと実に7年ぶりの新作エピソード描き下ろしとなります！ #ハガレン https://t.co/u6mQIrJ4W0—
ワーナー ブラザース ジャパン (@warnerjp) July 12, 2017
The exact specifics of how to get your hands on the new manga are yet to be laid out, but such movie tie-in goodies in Japan usually go to those who pre-purchase tickets. The live-action Fullmetal Alchemist premiers on December 1, so ticket pre-sales are still a few months away, but for sceptics who don’t think the story can be pulled off in non-illustrated form, at least they can take heart by thinking of the ticket purchase as paying for the new manga chapter, and the movie as the associated freebie instead.